Abarth Cars => Abarth 500 => Topic started by: Dread on February 19, 2021, 03:52:06 pm

Title: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on February 19, 2021, 03:52:06 pm
Hi folks !. :wave:

First time poster here, so hopefully someone can help me out. ;D

So, I bought a brand new 70 plate 595 Competizione in November and I absolutely love the car. As someone who has owned everything from an Intergra Type R to V6 Audi Quattro's it nicely fits into my current lifestyle of having an economical, but fun little pocket rocket.

However, I've noticed over the last few weeks as the weather has become much colder that I'm getting what I think is gearbox chatter from a cold start. I'm pretty sure the car has done it since I first got it, but I've only really noticed it when I need to get out and scrape the ice off the windows.

Basically, when I first start the car there is a slight rattle coming from the gearbox. If I push in the clutch, it vanishes. If I engage first gear and drive off, it vanishes. If I allow the car to remain in neutral and get up to full temperature, it vanishes. I also think it gets slightly louder when you engage the air con to defrost the windscreen. I found a number of threads about EXACTLY this issue on Volkswagon UP GTI's and VW has said it's nothing to worried about.  I also spoken to a couple of Fiat/Abarth technicians and they don't think it's anything to be concerned over, however I was wondering if anyone else with a 595 has this "issue", just to put my mind at ease. Oh, and the car has only done about 908 very gentle miles so far.

(It can be tough to hear it over the Record Monza exhaust though !. ;D)

Thanks in advance to anyone who responds. :thumb:
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: jpgibson on February 21, 2021, 09:56:03 am
Most likely I cant help as we never get that cold on Oz BUT unless you are VERY unlucky, it'll be nothing. These cars are pretty basic and have proven to be very reliable. To quell your concerns, it'll be under warranty- surely the dealer will fix it. Ive had two with MTA ( no undue noise) and now have a 2019 Comp- no noises.
Good luck!
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on February 21, 2021, 10:51:56 am
Thanks for the reply, mate. :thumb:

Aye, the car is still under it's 3 years warranty, so if there is an issue I SHOULD be able to get it fixed.

The problem I have though is that by the time I drive to the dealership, the car is up to full engine temp and there is no noise. So I'd have to leave the car there for a few hours, then return and try to point out the noise to them. It's a pain in the backside if there is no real problem, which is why I wondering if any other 595 owners have noticed a slight bit of gearbox chatter. To be fair though, it's pretty easy to miss if you don't know what you are listening to.
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on February 24, 2021, 02:30:31 pm
Just a quick update for anyone who's interested.

So, I left the car at the dealership for a few hours on Monday and returned so that they could hear the noise from a cold start. The mechanic confirmed that he could indeed hear the noise and that he has never heard anything like it before on any Abarth. He didn't think that it was anything to be concerned about, however he did suggest that I could book the car in so that they could get it up on the ramps and have a good look.

I've decided to do just that and I've booked the car in for next Tuesday. I've also noticed that even when the engine is now fully up to temp, in neutral if you raise the RPM's to around a constant 2000 you get a slight grinding/rattle noise. Not good on any car, but certainly not on one that has only done 950 miles !!!. :'(
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 02, 2021, 04:15:32 pm
Another update.

So, it turns out that I AM really unlucky. The garage has told me that when they drained the gearbox oil this morning, it was full of metal fillings and basically the gearbox has had it.  :'(

They are offering to replace the gearbox, but on a new car with less than a thousand miles, I want a replacement vehicle. However, they are saying that it's over the 30 days, so tough. Never mind the fact that I've been in level 4 Covid restrictions for the first month of owning the car and hard lockdown since, which legally requires me not to make journeys of more than 5 miles and no unnecessary trips. So how could I tell there was something wrong ?!!.

I've raised complaints with Abarth and the dealers head office. I don't expect to get very far though.  :thumbd:
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 124Abarthreplica on March 02, 2021, 07:48:21 pm
Not a good out come so far but at least the problem has been found. ::)

Perhaps a call to CAB might bring fruit to the trading standard situation. :thumb:
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 06, 2021, 08:06:46 pm

The dealer are absolutely refusing to even entertain the idea of rejecting the car regardless of the circumstances. I have contacted my MSP regarding the issues with Covid legislation affecting my consumer rights and my inability to determine an issue within the 30 day constraint spelt out in the Consumer rights act 2015. When I am LEGALLY obliged not to make non essential trips, I don't know how I am supposed to determine there is an issue with a car when I CAN'T DRIVE IT !.

Regardless, it looks like I should be getting a gearbox replacement, although after a week this has still not been confirmed.

I've had numerous issues around poor communication and just a generally appalling attitude from the dealer. Dismissive, unsympathetic and frankly just typical of Arnold Clark. If you live in the UK, just don't buy anything from them. Just don't...
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: mac1944 on March 07, 2021, 11:43:24 am
Standard practice for Arnold, I bought mine from Parks East Kilbride to avoid Arnold in awful February weather cost £500 to rectify dent in door and scratched roof (Protek Bathgate superb workmanship) didn't bother reporting it as only noticed at first cleaning about month later. Service dept quite aggressive when told car would be serviced by an Independent Alfa/Abarth Specialist. these are the only 2 Abarth dealers in Scotland.
 PLEASE FIAT appoint a dealer that actually cares.
Abarth sales in UK are up by about 50% must be room for an indepentant Scottish Fiat/Abarth dealer.
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 07, 2021, 01:20:38 pm
Aye, I bought mine from Arnold Clark Fiat/Abarth Kirkcaldy.

I swore I would NEVER buy another car from Arnold Clark after I bought an Integra Type-R from Arnold Clark Honda in Kirkcaldy a few years ago. Not only did they fit the air filter the wrong way around during a routine service and took the better part of a week to fix it (I kid you not), they dinged the front bumper and tried to hide it by painting it with a touch up stick (badly). Keep in mind the damage was about the size of your hand...

Sadly, Arnold Clark has a monopoly on Abarth in Scotland so you don't have a lot of choice if you want a new Abarth.

It gets even better though, Arnold Clark Fiat/Abarth Kirkcaldy didn't even bother to fit the BMC Air Filter or machined Aluminium fuel filler cap before I got the car. They didn't even know that there was a a kit tied to the cars chassis number. It took me until January the 5th (I bought the car November 3rd) to get the parts fitted and I had to locate the box myself. Seemingly there were another 30 boxes lying in the warehouse for other cars that had already been sold.

They really know how to shine when it comes to customer service...
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 124Abarthreplica on March 07, 2021, 01:47:16 pm
Have you received a reply from Abarth UK or Abarth Italy yet?
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 07, 2021, 07:30:23 pm
Yup, I spoke to them on Thursday.

At first they tried to suggest that the issue was to do with the gear linkages needing replaced because they had recently had a couple of similar complaints or rather complaints with similar symptoms, and Abarth had decided that it was the gear linkages that were faulty.

However, when I pointed out to the gentleman from Abarth (really nice bloke, clearly English but phoning from Italy) that gear linkages would not cause the car to jump out of reverse or explain the amount of metal contamination in the gearbox oil (unless it was causing the gears not to mesh correctly in which case it was irrelevant) he agreed that it was clearly a much more terminal problem.

I can't speak highly enough about how helpful the Abarth representative was. He said that as I was determined to to try and reject the car, he couldn't really help me out as my dispute was with Arnold Clark. However, he sympathised and said that he would call me again on Wednesday to discuss a possible warranty extension if I was unsuccessful in my rejection.

I'm expecting a call tomorrow from the Arnold Clark General Manager I had the "discussion" with on Tuesday and we will see what he has to say for himself. When I spoke to Arnold Clark's complaint department yesterday they suggested that a goodwill gesture could be a tank of fuel and a valet. I told the guy that a quarter of  a tank and washing the car wasn't really going to cut it, but we will see tomorrow.
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 124Abarthreplica on March 08, 2021, 09:19:03 am
When did you first raise the gearbox issue with Arnold Clarke?
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 08, 2021, 03:27:18 pm
I bought the car on November 3rd and took it back to the garage with a "mystery rattle" on November 5th. They looked around the car and declared it was the rear number plate being incorrectly fitted. I only noticed it then because the weather was still quite nice and I'd had the windows open when driving. That visit is documented, but the gearbox isn't specifically mentioned.

I next asked about the gearbox when I was having the BMC air filter and aluminium fuel cap fitted. The car had jumped out of reverse a couple of times and I asked the service manager for his opinion. He suggested it could just be because the car was so new and the gearbox was needing run in, but I should keep an eye on it. That was in late December/ early January. Sadly I didn't document that conversation.

And then the main conversation was on February 22nd when I left that car at the garage so that they could hear the noise from a cold start.

Today's update from the general manager is that they still can't tell me what's going on. They can't say if the whole gearbox is going to be replaced or if Fiat/Abarth want them to strip and repair it. They can't even give me a time scale. I of course need to know what's going on so I can decide if I'm going to go through the Motor Ombudsman.

The whole thing is just a car crash (pardon the pun).
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 124Abarthreplica on March 08, 2021, 06:29:16 pm
As you raised the "mystery rattle" issue within two days, I would say you every right to ask for a new replacement vehicle.

Have a meeting with the Motor Ombudsman for clarity. :thumb:
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 10, 2021, 04:56:33 pm
My rejection of the car is still being refused.

I've been told today that Abarth want the garage to order new 3rd and 4th gears as a precaution, because they identified problems with these gears and it will take 7 - 10 days for them to arrive from Italy. The factory still haven't made up their mind about what they want the dealer to do and I'm now over a week on from dropping the car off at the garage.

At this rate I'll be lucky to see my car again this month.

I despair...
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 124Abarthreplica on March 10, 2021, 07:32:57 pm
I also despair... :(

Have they provided you with a replacement car whilst yours is in?

Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 10, 2021, 08:40:44 pm

I requested a courtesy car AGAIN today and was supposed to get a call back to organise it. Never happened. Asked to have the technical emails from Arnold Clark to Abarth and vice versa copied to me. Never happened.

Even the Abarth customer service representative I spoke to today was perplexed as to why I was having to run around in a 20 year old Yaris (my Gran's old car). He couldn't get his head around why Arnold Clark wouldn't have given me a courtesy car when they can bill Abarth for it.

You couldn't make it up.
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 124Abarthreplica on March 11, 2021, 08:56:18 am
Depending on how you financed the purchase, contact the lender to help you?
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 695C on March 11, 2021, 09:13:35 am
Escalate escalate escalate - talk to someone who has the power to make decisions. Harsh tone untill it is escalated to the right level and then a forthcoming and 'my problem is obvious to everyone' tone when in contact with the right person.
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 11, 2021, 04:01:09 pm
I bought the car outright, so no joy there.

Also, I'm well aware of the old adage "Don't speak to the monkey, speak to the organ grinder". I've escalated thing s to a point where even my MSP (Member of the Scottish Parliament) is involved.

Oh, and I finally got offered a courtesy car today from Enterprise car rentals. I was told to expect an equivalent car to a 595 Compeitzione. Their offer ?. A Hyundia i20 for which I would be fully liable... :thumbd:
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 19, 2021, 04:15:52 pm
Important Update.

So, I've finally had some explanation as to what is going on.

First off, my car is STILL at the garage. That's nearly 3 weeks now and I've been told that the 3rd and 4th gear synchro's that were ordered have not arrived yet. ETA is middle of next week. So, I MIGHT see my car (after nearly a month) at the end of week.

Apparently the reason that Abarth don't just want to fit a new gearbox is because all new box's have also been built using defective 3rd and 4th gear synchro's. Seemingly, there are supposed to be  brass synchro cones on 3rd and 4th gears, but the defective ones are just carbon. So if you have bought a new 595 in the last few months, make sure that you don't have a metallic rattle coming from your gearbox on a cold start. I've been told that 50 of each are on their way into the UK right now, so that's at least 50 cars !. :o

Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Dread on March 26, 2021, 10:54:13 pm
Final update !.

So, I got a call from the service manager at the dealership today to ask if I would like to see inside the gearbox now that it has been opened and cleaned. I said yes and went along this morning.

Okay, so the visible damage even before they began stripping out the components was severe. There were metal splinters the length of your pinkie nail and extensive scoring to the gears themselves. There was a chip out of a reverse gear tooth, (which explains the car jumping out of reverse) and the metal contamination in the oil was like a child had just poured glitter into it.

They were talking about trying to replace ALL of the internals in the gearbox, to which I said, NO !. I pointed out  the minimum I would accept would be a factory sealed brand new gearbox, but that my preferred option was to reject the car.

I spoke to the general manager and pointed out that under the Consumer Rights Act 2015, they had now exhausted their one attempt at repair or replace as they had ordered 3rd and 4th gear syncro cones as the final fix and that had now failed to resolve the issues. They have also had the car for nearly 4 weeks and any additional fix would be an open ended timescale.

So, they have now taken the car back and given me a full refund. A like for like replacement isn't an option for now as there appear to be a large number of defective gearbox's that have been fitted to recent 595's and there is no guarantee that any replacement wouldn't be faulty.

Additionally, the dealership are at present unable to order any new gearbox's from Fiat/Abarth as they are all now showing on their system as being reconditioned. I wonder why...

So, basically I'm left now looking for another car. Back to thinking about that new Civic Type-R I guess...

Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: 124Abarthreplica on March 27, 2021, 09:06:16 am
Well success but at a cost to you and your sanity.

Shame it had to go so far.

Wish you well with your future purchase :wave:
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: vialli on April 28, 2021, 09:39:40 pm
Bought a new "comp" 3 weeks ago ,just coming up to 300 miles and when I went out in it today I noticed a strange whirring /rattling noise at cold start, disappears when I push the clutch pedal down.just been reading this post ,think I may have the same issue.
Title: Re: Gearbox "chatter" on new 595 Competizione
Post by: Bishopton on April 30, 2021, 04:04:06 pm
Picked up MY21 Comp in March.   
Appears I may have this 'issue' too; I have the same noise at cold start up
Again, disappears when clutch engaged
Waiting on dealership getting back to me re courtesy car so they can get it booked in
I previously sent them a video but they couldn't really hear the sound clearly